If you’ve ever had a herniated disc, you know how painful it can be. And just like humans, dogs can have serious spine problems too. These days, 10 year old cocker spaniel Biscuit spends a lot of time lying down. Biscuit actually needs someone to prop up his backside, in order to keep him standing!
Dr. Rose Lemarie from Southeast Veterinary Specialists explains, “About a week ago, his owners noticed he was having difficulty walking in his back legs and couldn’t push himself up. So he came into see us because he couldn’t walk and he had lost all of his ability to move his back legs and his tail.” Dr. Lemarie found what she suspected on the x-rays. Biscuit suffered from not one, but two ruptured discs! In just a short period of time, the ruptures caused his spinal cord to essentially stop working.
If your dog has a painful ruptured disc, but can still move around, rest and medication can potentially fix the problem. However, if it’s a case like Biscuit where he can’t move his back legs at all, it’s important to get your dog to surgery immediately! Dr. Lemarie explains, “The treatment for Biscuit was back surgery and Biscuit had back surgery about a week ago and since that time, he’s getting his motor function back. He’s regained the ability to urinate on his own, he’s able to wag his tail and he’s got movement in both of his rear legs.” Small dogs tend to heal quicker than medium and large breeds, but Biscuit’s already on the road to recovery thanks to the expert hands of Dr. Lemarie and his owner, who immediately got him the medical attention he needed.
About a week after surgery, dogs that undergo spine surgery like Biscuit will begin therapy. At Southeast Veterinary Specialists, the doctors usually start with the underwater treadmill.